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News archive

06 June 2019

Pregnant Deer Dies After Getting Trapped in Goal Net

A pregnant deer has died after its head became trapped in the netting of some goalposts at Henderson Sport and Social Club, Harold Hill, Romford.

Pregnant deer dies in net

A group of local residents rushed to the doe’s aid after a walker discovered her and cut the net from around her neck but the deer had sadly passed away.

Jan and Shantel Louise, from local volunteer group Harold Hill Deer Aid, as well as Lorraine Stevens, contacted a vet who came to help them perform an emergency caesarian in an attempt to rescue the fawn, but sadly the fawn had already died as well.

03 June 2019

Staten Island’s Deer Vasectomy Scheme Having Little Impact

After three years and a cost of $4.1 million deer vasectomies have trimmed Staten Island’s by a total of 316 animals.

Staten Island’s $4.1M deer vasectomy scheme

This means US taxpayers have spent $12,975 a head to shave 15% off the huge herd.

The city hired White Buffalo in 2016 to run the world’s first attempt to curb deer by sterilizing only males, as the borough’s herd increased to a high of 2,053 in 2017—an 8,454% increase in less than a decade.

31 May 2019

Farmers Urged to Check for Young Deer

At this time of year, many farmers will be harvesting silage, but unfortunately, it's not uncommon for young deer to be killed in the process. 

Farmers Urged to Check for Young Deer

It is normal for a mother to leave a young hidden because it cannot keep up with her when she is feeding and our standard advice is to leave them well alone. However, if they are hidden in a farmers field this can be extremely dangerous. We urge farmers to check for young hidden in the field before harvesting and move these to a safe place.

A popular method is to walk the area with a dog before harvesting. Thankfully we know many farmers do this, but as the young deer are often well hidden with little or no scent they can be extremely difficult to spot. A few years ago a couple of wild game managers from Germany came up with a possible solution to the problem.

31 May 2019

6 Nara Deer Deaths Attributed to Plastic

One of the highlights of a visit to Nara in Japan is the chance to walk amongst the city’s free-roaming deer. 

However, it appears that some tourists have been feeding something other than the deer-friendly senbei crackers available to these nationally protected animals.

6 Nara Deer Deaths Attributed to Plastic

According to a recent report from the Nara Deer Welfare Association, the animals have been eating plastic, which has led to the deaths of a number of deer in recent months.

Since March this year, a total of eight deer with deaths from unknown causes have been autopsied. Six were found to have plastic bags in their stomachs, with the largest clump weighing 4.3 kilograms. 

31 May 2019

Sightings of Endangered Huemul Deer

A team of scientists have managed to capture for the first time images of a dozen endangered South Andean deer, known as "huemul", in an area in the Chilean Patagonia where they had never been sighted.

28 May 2019

SNH to Launch General Licence, for the Control of Certain Bird Species, Consultation

Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) has announced a 12-week consultation about General Licences, for the control of certain bird species, will take place later this year.

General licences for birds

Robbie Kernahan, SNH’s Head of National Operations, said:

“We want to ensure that General Licences in Scotland are clear, proportionate and fit-for-purpose.  In light of the complicated situation in England with General Licences right now, we have decided to bring forward our consultation which had been scheduled for 2020."

“Our General Licences cover relatively common situations – such as preventing agricultural damage and protecting public health and safety – when there’s unlikely to be any conservation impact on a species. They avoid the need for people to apply for individual licences for these specific situations. As with any licence, we need to ensure that General Licences strike the appropriate balance between species conservation and a range of other legitimate interests.”

“We would like to reassure those who are currently operating under General Licences in Scotland that these remain in place, allowing those who comply with the conditions to continue to use them.”

21 May 2019

UK Deer Populations and Nightingales

Chris Packham’s recent call to kill more deer in order to save Britain’s nightingales is perhaps (and perhaps deliberately?) an oversimplification, writes Professor Rory Putman, Chairman of the British Deer Society.

I have known Chris Packham for a good many years and he is a very fine naturalist and an extremely well-informed zoologist. It is a shame that on this occasion the quest for a good soundbite would appear to have caused him to abandon his usual scientific rigour.

There is, I think, no doubt that nightingales (as well as a number of other woodlands species of songbirds) have declined significantly over recent years.  Robin Gill and Rob Fuller have shown an association between such declines and a change in woodland architecture, with a reduction within affected woodlands in the shrub layer and the foliar insects on which these insectivorous species depend. 

nightingale

Where deer densities are especially high, their browsing may indeed be one factor contributing to this reduction in the shrub layer of the wood,  but the shrub layer may also be reduced, or even lost where there is poor light penetration through the canopy in unthinned woodlands (where perhaps more active woodland management practices such as ride clearance or coppicing may have been abandoned).  And, ironically, in such cases, there is good evidence that browsing by deer and other large herbivores, by maintaining open areas, may be actively beneficial for a number of equally sensitive bird species such as wood warblers, pied flycatchers and redstarts.  

14 May 2019

Motorists urged: Be deer aware

Drivers warned to look out for deer roaming on to the country’s roads.

Drivers are being warned by Highways England to look out for deer roaming on to the country’s roads and posing risks to road users. The warning comes after five deer were found dead at one location on the A35 in Dorset recently.

Figures collated from various studies suggest at least there could be some 400 people injured in deer-related collisions each year, and potentially around 20 people killed.

Motorists urged: Be deer aware

At this time of year, deer collisions peak as many of the animals cross roads seeking new territories. The highest risk of collisions is between sunset and midnight, and the hours shortly before and after sunrise.

The Deer Initiative and Highways England have teamed up to give advice to drivers.